One of the winners is Allmakes 4x4, which employs 105 people, and has won the award for the second time. Allmakes 4x4 exports Land Rover spare parts to more than 90 countries. It last won the award for exports in 1991. Now it has more than doubled its export sales in three years to more than £36m – and in the process created 22 more jobs at its base in Milton Park, Didcot.
Mike Hands said the company was originally founded in a room the size of a Land Rover Discovery at the Wolvercote home of his father Peter back in 1976. Hands said, 'My father was a former British Leyland employee who loved Land Rovers, saw an opportunity and seized it together with fellow founder Terry Chipperfield.' He added, 'This has really always been a labour of love.'
He explained the success of the business reflected the appeal of the Land Rover, 'The great thing about Land Rovers is that they are largely the same shape as they were in 1984, and they are easy to strip down and put together again, and that makes them popular everywhere. They have certainly provided us with quite a ride over the years.'
There are three award categories of The Queen's Awards, for outstanding achievement in international trade, innovation and sustainable development.
This year 152 winners were chosen across the UK.